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sciftw eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The formula that you have written is the formula for acceleration.  

A = Acceleration

FV = Final velocity 

IV = Initial velocity

T = Time it took to change velocities

For example:  Suppose that you are driving a car at 5 m/s.  You then speed up to 35 m/s, and it took you 3 seconds to do that velocity change.  

Put your known values into the equation.  

A = (35 m/s - 5 m/s)/3 sec

A = (30 m/s)/3 seconds

A = 10 m/s/s

The unit is m/s/s, because the vehicle accelerated by 10 m/s each second.  Sometimes using miles per hour helps students understand the unit better.  I'll use the same numbers, but this time change the velocity unit.  

A = (35 mi/hr - 5 mi/hr)/3 sec

A = (30 mi/hr)/3 seconds

A = 10 mi/hr/s

That means the car sped up by 10 miles per hour for each of the following 3 seconds.  

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